International Economics

International Economics Program

The International Economics Program provides students with a firm grasp of the theory and tools of economics and finance and the functioning of the international economic system. These skills are an important component of modern training in international affairs. In addition, the advanced courses in the program can be used to prepare interested students for a variety of careers in international economic and financial analysis as well as in business.

The study of economics is an integral part of the academic program here at SAIS. The strong emphasis placed on economics in the curriculum is one of the unique characteristics that sets SAIS apart from other graduate programs in international affairs. Thus, in partial fulfillment of the M.A. in International Relations, all students must complete a concentration in International Economics by passing a minimum of four (4) economics courses formally taken at SAIS, over and above any economics courses that might be waived.

This required concentration in international economics is designed to provide students with a solid understanding of economic theories and concepts as well as the important role economics processes play in international affairs. Whether you are interested in pursuing a career in international finance, public policy, business, or economic development, our program provides students with the knowledge, skills, and analytical capacity required for success in both the public and private sector.

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Curriculum

 

International Economics | M.A. Academic Requirements

International Economics Learning Goals and Objectives

Entering Class 2014-2015

Every M.A. student at SAIS is required to complete a concentration in International Economics. Student must successfully complete a minimum of four (4) for-credit economics courses at SAIS. Separately, students must complete one Quantitative Reasoning requirement. These four course include:

  • Microeconomics
  • Macroeconomics
  • International Trade Theory
  • International Monetary Theory

Students may also choose to pursue a specialization in the following areas:

  • Quantitative Methods and Economic Theory
  • International Finance
  • Microeconomics of Development
  • Economic Policy
 

Economics Concentration Requirements

Students must successfully complete a minimum of four (4) for-credit economics courses at SAIS.

Fundamental Course Requirements:

Must demonstrate proficiency in intermediate-level courses in Microeconomics and Macroeconomics by either passing these courses as part of the minimum economics course requirement, or passing the respective waiver exam.*

Core Economics Course Requirements:

Must demonstrate proficiency in intermediate-level courses in International Trade Theory and International Monetary Theory by either passing these courses as part of the minimum economics course requirement, or passing the respective waiver exam.*

*If achieved by passing a waiver exam(s), the student must substitute an economics elective course(s) in place of the waived course(s) in order to fulfill the economics requirement above.

 

Economics Specializations Course Requirements (Optional)

Economics Specializations:

For students with sufficient interest and room in their two-year program of study, we allow specialization in any of the following areas of International Economics:

  • Quantitative Methods and Economic Theory
  • International Finance
  • Microeconomics of Development
  • Economic Policy

Each of these generally require a set of four additional electives in the specialization area, with some specializations having other additional requirements. Students who achieve a specialization will have this appropriately denoted on their transcript. Completing an economics specialization is NOT required for fulfilling the SAIS M.A., however, students with superior economics preparation or aptitude are encouraged to attempt one.

 

M.A. Oral Exam to Compete for Honors

The M.A. oral exam tests students’ knowledge of international economics and their chosen functional or regional concentration. Exams are held in August, December and May and are scheduled by the SAIS Registrar’s Office. Only the top 30 percent of the student body are eligible to compete for honors. The 30 percent cutoff is determined by students’ grade point average after their third semester (after the second semester for students who have advanced standing of one semester). Students with conferral dates of August or December will be selected to compete for honors based on the previous May’s GPA cutoff.

Two examiners administer the oral exam: a full- or part-time professor from the student’s functional or regional program, and an international economist from the SAIS faculty or from the local academic, government or policy community. If a student is pursuing a third concentration, three examiners will administer the oral exam.

 

PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS BY ACADEMIC YEAR (AY)

Entering Class 2013-2014
Entering Class 2012-2013
Entering Class 2011-2012
Entering Class 2010-2011
Entering Class 2009-2010 (same as 2010-2011)

Curriculum

 

International Economics | M.A. Academic Requirements

International Economics Learning Goals and Objectives

Entering Class 2014-2015

Every M.A. student at SAIS is required to complete a concentration in International Economics. Student must successfully complete a minimum of four (4) for-credit economics courses at SAIS. Separately, students must complete one Quantitative Reasoning requirement. These four course include:

  • Microeconomics
  • Macroeconomics
  • International Trade Theory
  • International Monetary Theory

Students may also choose to pursue a specialization in the following areas:

  • Quantitative Methods and Economic Theory
  • International Finance
  • Microeconomics of Development
  • Economic Policy
 

Economics Concentration Requirements

Students must successfully complete a minimum of four (4) for-credit economics courses at SAIS.

Fundamental Course Requirements:

Must demonstrate proficiency in intermediate-level courses in Microeconomics and Macroeconomics by either passing these courses as part of the minimum economics course requirement, or passing the respective waiver exam.*

Core Economics Course Requirements:

Must demonstrate proficiency in intermediate-level courses in International Trade Theory and International Monetary Theory by either passing these courses as part of the minimum economics course requirement, or passing the respective waiver exam.*

*If achieved by passing a waiver exam(s), the student must substitute an economics elective course(s) in place of the waived course(s) in order to fulfill the economics requirement above.

 

Economics Specializations Course Requirements (Optional)

Economics Specializations:

For students with sufficient interest and room in their two-year program of study, we allow specialization in any of the following areas of International Economics:

  • Quantitative Methods and Economic Theory
  • International Finance
  • Microeconomics of Development
  • Economic Policy

Each of these generally require a set of four additional electives in the specialization area, with some specializations having other additional requirements. Students who achieve a specialization will have this appropriately denoted on their transcript. Completing an economics specialization is NOT required for fulfilling the SAIS M.A., however, students with superior economics preparation or aptitude are encouraged to attempt one.

 

M.A. Oral Exam to Compete for Honors

The M.A. oral exam tests students’ knowledge of international economics and their chosen functional or regional concentration. Exams are held in August, December and May and are scheduled by the SAIS Registrar’s Office. Only the top 30 percent of the student body are eligible to compete for honors. The 30 percent cutoff is determined by students’ grade point average after their third semester (after the second semester for students who have advanced standing of one semester). Students with conferral dates of August or December will be selected to compete for honors based on the previous May’s GPA cutoff.

Two examiners administer the oral exam: a full- or part-time professor from the student’s functional or regional program, and an international economist from the SAIS faculty or from the local academic, government or policy community. If a student is pursuing a third concentration, three examiners will administer the oral exam.

 

PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS BY ACADEMIC YEAR (AY)

Entering Class 2013-2014
Entering Class 2012-2013
Entering Class 2011-2012
Entering Class 2010-2011
Entering Class 2009-2010 (same as 2010-2011)

Waiver Exams

The International Economics Program offers students with prior equivalent coursework in microeconomics, macroeconomics, international trade, international monetary theory, or statistics the option to take waiver examinations in each subject in order to facilitate the attainment of the economics requirements of the M.A. Degree. Click on each link below and read thoroughly as there are specific rules that apply to the economics waiver process.
 

Specializations

The International Economics Program offers specializations within economics for those students with a strong background or interest in economics who wish to pursue a set of elective courses in one particular area. Specializations are offered in four areas of economics.

These specializations include:

  • Quantitative Methods and Economic Theory    
  • International Finance
  • Development Microeconomics
  • Economic Policy


Requirements for Specializations

A student's specialization application along with a copy of his/her transcript must be submitted to the International Economics Program Office (Bernstein-Offit 705) before the beginning of the student's last semester at SAIS.

The International Economics Program offers specializations within economics for those students with a strong background or interest in economics who wish to pursue a set of elective courses in one particular area. All of the specializations involve completion of the basic and core required International Economics courses:

300.700 Microeconomics or 300.699 Accelerated Microeconomics
300.701 Macroeconomics or 300.706 Accelerated Macroeconomics
300.707 International Trade Theory or 300.851 Accelerated International Trade Theory
300.708 International Monetary Theory or 300.852 Accelerated International Monetary Theory

In addition, students must complete a combination of required/electivecourses from area-specific lists found below.

Specializations are offered in four areas of economics. The links below define the requirements for each  specialization above the basic and core required courses for the International Economics concentration:

  • Specialization in Quantitative Methods and Economic Theory – focuses both the technical (quantitative) skills of economics and the analyticals (theoretical) aspects of the disciplines.
  • Specialization in International Finance – focuses on financial markets and financial-decision making in the area of international economics.
  • Specialization in DevelopmentMicroeconomics – focuses on a range of issues of developing and transitioning countries with an emphasis on microeconomics development.
  • Specialization in Economic Policy – focuses on market and regulatory/institutional aspects of policy problems of either the micro or macro variety and practical applications of economic thought to policy problems in any of the trade, monetary/finance or growth/development arenas.


Completion of the requirements in a specialization will result in a formal indication of the specialization on the student's transcript. Completion of the requirements for any of the specializations satisfies the International Economics concentration requirement for the SAIS M.A. degree.

These specializations do not change the requirement of a concentration in an examination field outside of International Economics. They are simply an option for students wishing to indicate a focus of study within the field of international economics.

It should be recognized that these specializations are significantly more demanding in terms of economics knowledge and workload than the general International Economics requirement. Students with no prior background in economics, as well as those students who do not fulfill the basic requirements (Microeconomics and Macroeconomics) before starting their first full semester are discouraged from considering a specialization.

Double Counting Courses for Specializations
Courses that appear in multiple specialization lists may be counted toward only ONE specialization.

Note on Cross-Listed Courses
Be aware that the International Economics Program reviews the elective courses listed in each specialization yearly and that non-International Economics Program courses may be added or deleted. Any changes will be announced at the beginning of each academic year.

Note on SAIS Europe Courses
Students at SAIS Europe should check the curriculum listings for each semester to determine the economics courses offered.

____________________________________________
Specialization in Quantitative Methods and Economic Theory

Checklist Form for Class 2013

Checklist Form for Class of 2012 and Prior
_______________________________________________

Specialization in International Finance

Checklist Form
______________________________

Specialization in Development Microeconomics

Checklist Form  

Checklist Form for Class of 2012 and Prior
___________________________________
Specialization in Economic Policy

Checklist Form

 

 

 

 

Faculty

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Program Activities

 

Learning Beyond the Classroom

The International Economics Program offers students the opportunity to gain knowledge outside of the classroom through weekly faculty seminars and regularly scheduled brown bag discussions.

 

Faculty Seminars

The International Economics Program holds regular seminars on Thursday afternoons, where invited professors present and receive feedback on research papers.  These seminars are open to the SAIS community. Learn more about our faculty seminars.

Click here to see our upcoming Faculty Seminars! 

 

Brown Bag Events

The International Economics Program holds regular brown bag lunches on Wednesdays, where SAIS professors and invited guests discuss and receive feedback on preliminary research ideas. Learn more about our brown bag events.

Program Activities: Washington, D.C.

Program Activities: Europe

Program Activities: Nanjing

Events



Research

Our Alumni

 

SAIS Economic Alumni Network (SEAN)

Welcome to the SAIS Economics Alumni Network (SEAN) homepage.  We have created SEAN for those alumni with a special interest in international economics.  We hope you take advantage of the many benefits we have to offer by joining today!

Benefits of joining the SAIS Economics Alumni Network:  

  • Keeping up-to-date on current happenings in the International economics department
  • Updates on various clubs associated with the economics department
  • Possible networking opportunities with fellow alumni
  • Internship possibilities for current students
  • Participation in economic-related events
  • Access to our bi-annual International Economics newsletter featuring information on new faculty, visiting scholars, upcoming seminars, published professors and any other relevant information
  • A yearly social gathering for alumni and professors
     

If you would like to be a part of SEAN, please email us at saiseconalum@jhu.edu.  Please send us your name, current position (title, company), city and preferred email address.

You may also stay connected with us via LinkedIn and Facebook.

External Resources

 

Economics Resources

International Economic Tutor List
Please note that the international economics department only organizes the list of tutors. You must contact the tutor directly to work out the logistics.

Click here to access the current list of tutors.

International Economic and Financial Institutions

The International Monetary Fund - IMF
The World Bank - World Bank
Bank of International Settlements - BIS
Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development - OECD

SAIS Library International Economics and Business Research Guide

U.S. Economic and Financial Institutions

The Federal Reserve -  Federal Reserve
US Department of Commerce - Commerce Department
USDC Bureau of Economic Analysis - Bureau of Economic Analysis
US International Trade Commission - International Trade Commission
US Securities and Exchange Commission - SEC

Data Sources

Stock Prices - Stockprices.com
Exchange Rates - Exchangerates.com

Interesting Links

Rational Expectations.com

Contact Us

Gordon Bodnar
Morris W. Offit Professor of International Finance, Director of the International Economics Program

bodnar@jhu.edu
Bernstein-Offit 704

Sherry Russo
Program Coordinator

srusso1@jhu.edu
202-663-7787
Bernstein-Offit 705

Address & Phone

International Economics
Bernstein-Offit Building
1717 Massachusetts Ave., N.W.
Washington, D.C.
20036
  • 202-663-7787